The day we met Eden
I had a horrendous birth experience with Judah so I’m not saying anyone particularly enjoys labour but, in comparison giving birth to Eden was amazing.
The pregnancy with Eden was awful, you can read about it here to better understand why I asked for an induction. I went to see the consultant a few times from 38 weeks pregnant to be checked for favourability for induction but my body wasn’t ready.
I was due November 17th and on November 18th (40+1) I arrived at the hospital at 10:30am to be induced. I had to wait for them to start the process as no-one had informed me that incase my induction resulted in a section I shouldn’t have taken my heparin injection that morning (I was on it to prevent clots as my weight had ballooned and my pregnancy was spent mostly in bed). Well, I say I had to wait but it was more that I could’ve had the gel straight away as my body was ready to go, but instead I had the suppository. So I had to wait until 8pm for them to start the ball rolling properly and give me the gel.
Then my husband went home – the worst part of the induction process!!! Yes, I get it, in theory I should’ve had a nice sleep and been ready to go in the morning, but at 9:30pm I started full on contractions. I think my body had been ready for labour and just needed that final push, because none of the midwives seemed to take me on as they’d only just put the gel in me. Their logic was, it doesn’t work that quickly.
I was in so much pain, I had my TENS machine on full and was sitting on a birthing ball in the day room as I was keeping up the other lady in the room with my pain noises every time I had a contraction. I was in tears and almost screaming in pain at one point, the midwife came to check on me (I think she thought I was being soft as the contractions weren’t regular at all, they were sporadic), she told me labour hadn’t started yet and to calm down.
Grr… I was angry. Not in labour yet? This was not my first child and I have a high pain threshold. Grr… she wouldn’t even check me. Between contractions I was arguing with God that I had made the wrong choice being induced and that being away from James whilst having this pain was just cruel. I felt totally alone. Now you may think I’m a loon for what I say next but this is the way my relationship with God is and I can’t leave Him out of my birth story as to me He was so evident in it. I felt God whisper to me ‘go have a bath and then get them to check you.’ So off I hobbled to run myself a bath. I did not like having to take off the TENS machine, I thought God didn’t have a clue telling me to do this, but I did it anyway. The bath calmed me down, I relaxed, still having contractions (strong ones) but they seemed to calm. You know when people talk about labour like a flower opening up etc. yes, you know what I mean? I think yes, yes that’s very beautiful people but that is not what I think about when I think about labour, not after 5 days with Judah. However, I could feel my body opening up. I got out of the bath, got myself back in bed, pressed the buzzer and insisted they check me, it was now about 2am ish. ‘Oh yes, you’re 7 cm’s let’s strap you on the monitor and then see how you feel?’
Strap me on a monitor??? Are these people for real? I don’t know what the aim was here, maybe a midwife will comment and clue me in, to see how far I could go naturally? It took a while for my brain to engage, then I realised, hang on, if I was at home, you can get on to Delivery Suite once you’re past 4 cm’s. I pressed the buzzer again. ‘I’m done with the monitor, I am not coping, I NEED pain relief’ as soon as I communicated that, the response came ‘ok let’s call up to delivery suite and get you a bed, do you want to call your husband and get your stuff ready to go upstairs?’ Delivery suite was on the next floor up.
Of course I rang my husband and mum (I had 2 birth partners both times I was in labour), they were on their way. We had brought so much stuff, the worst part of labour for me was just being without my husband whilst in pain, and then having to pack my own stuff up between contractions. I had not lifted a thing for months, I had been a complete cripple then they think whilst I am in the throws of labour I can pack up my own suitcase? I was crying whilst I did it, and again thinking ‘God, this is cruel’ man it makes me cry writing it now, forgot how horrible that moment was, but I did it! So I got all my stuff packed up, into the corridor, and on my crutches waited for an orderly to come and take me upstairs. Then, like the prince on the white horse in the fairytales, my hero arrived. I have never been so glad to see James in my life (except from standing, waiting down the aisle for me on our wedding day lol). My hero! We went up to delivery suite and this tale becomes much nicer from now on.
We then went into our lovely room, I had my TENS machine firmly strapped back on. Got on the bed, was checked over and then was just moving around the room as best I could. My mum arrived, yay! I told them straight away on Delivery Suite that I wanted an epidural, off they went to find an anaesthetist (I had an epidural with Judah reluctantly but this time I wasn’t wasting any time).
I then remembered whilst we waited, I can have gas and air, so onto the gas and air I went. My husband and mum were there when I gave birth the first time too, apparently I’m a delight on the entinox. I had them laughing at my delirious comments. At one point I told them we could play a trick on the midwives and my Mum could lie on the bed and they would think it was her in labour because we were both wearing black dresses (comfy cotton ones, we weren’t in our ball gowns) Lol, where was my brain at? I wasn’t even in my black dress anymore, I was in my perfectly picked out nightie. Then I said ‘oh no, they’ll know cos we’re not dressed the same.’ My husband led next to me now just told me I said ‘let’s scare her!’ That’s apparently what I said. Lol, random brain. Probably not a good idea to scare the midwife who’s going to deliver your baby.
The worst part about an epidural (if it all goes smoothly of course) is taking off your TENS machine whilst you’re waiting for it work. Man, did I suck the heck out of the gas and air in the gaps I was allowed. Once it kicks in, it’s great, I just relaxed. Had a lovely chat to my Mum and James, made them laugh with my entinox delusions, then got checked at 8.30am, it had been 4 hours since they last checked me.
I was 10 cm’s and ready to go. As Eden was back to back, more painful to push and generally harder (I was aware from Judah) they monitored her, told me baby was happy and we could just wait an hour to see if she turned round and then push either way.
So, I just relaxed, I didn’t understand why we didn’t just go for it, and was a bit impatient, but my body was relaxed at this stage so I just did as I was told, although she had been back to back for weeks at all my appointments so didn’t know what difference an hour would make. My mum prayed for me, her exact words were ‘come on little Eden, be like your mummy and do a little pirouette to face the right way’.
A few minutes later the midwife came back in the room, it was time. The monitor started beeping, I was very concerned as it was about this stage last time I was whisked off to theatre. The heartbeat had gone from the monitors. I didn’t like this one bit. The midwife checked the internal monitor that was clipped to Eden’s head inside me. ‘Ooh she’s just done a little pirouette’ (couldn’t believe she used the EXACT same word) and is now facing the right way.
In 5 mins and 3 pushes she was out. Couldn’t believe it. She was such a little delight. She looked so beautiful but not what I expected. I thought she had downs syndrome (not that it would change how much I loved her at all, we deliberately didn’t have the screening as it was irrelevant to us) but I kept waiting for them to tell me. Hope that’s not too honest? I just hadn’t seen a new born baby before as Judah was whisked straight off to neo-natal and I wasn’t able to even meet him for 2 days. I quietly asked my husband a bit later, who corrected my thoughts.
The above pic was taken by my husband moments after.
Below are some more pictures of that day as Eden met the family. They were not taken with the best camera I’m afraid.